Welcome to Common Gunsense

I hope this blog will provoke some thoughtful reflection about the issue of guns and gun violence. I am passionate about the issue and would love to change some misperceptions and the culture of gun violence in America by sharing with readers words, photos, videos and clips from articles to promote common sense about gun issues. Many of you will agree with me- some will not. I am only one person but one among many who think it's time to do something about this national problem. The views expressed by me in this blog do not represent any group with which I am associated but are rather my own personal opinions and thoughts.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Jesus and the second amendment

Seriously folks. I had planned to write about several other things today until I ran across this most ridiculous article:
"In a chilling assault on reasonable sensibilities from yet another in a growing line of gun-crazed RWNJ‘s, Christian chaplain Gordon Klingenschmitt urged the followers of his “Pray In Jesus Name” program to “sell your clothes and buy a gun.”
Using Jesus to unequivocally declare to his (presumably weak-minded) followers that they are “being denied their Second Amendment rights,”"Dr. Chaps,” as he calls himself, quoted United States Army Captain Terry M. Hestilow (Ret.), who is on record as stating the Department of Homeland Security intends to kill:
“…Anyone they think is standing in their way to impose a new Marxist government… anyone who stands for the U.S. Constitution.”
Comparing this impending doom to the imminent crucifixion of Jesus, Klingenschmitt quotes Luke 22:36 NIV, which states:
“Jesus said ‘if you don’t have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one.’”
Quick question – what ever happened to that old “live by the sword, die by the sword” thing? To wit – Matthew 26:52:
“Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.”
In the most chilling segment of the video, “Dr. Chaps” leaves nothing to interpretation:
“You know what, citizens? If you don’t have a gun - I’m telling you as a Christian chaplain - sell your clothes, and buy a gun. It’s time! The government persecution will be coming against you, and you needs to arm yourselves…”"
" Gordon James Klingenschmitt was a Navy Chaplain who was court-martialed for refusing to follow orders, lying, and generally not acting like a navy officer should. Now he is getting into trouble with a website that gives the illusion that he is still a Navy chaplain. No surprise here, he is now calling for God to kill people he disagrees with."
Wow. He is espousing other right wing conservative views as well. So let me get this straight. A former disgraced "Christian" chaplain is telling people to go out and buy guns in the name of Jesus? What has our country come to? Amazing really. But just so you don't think I am making this up, below is the video of this guy from the article:

Now I am a practicing Christian. This is not what I hear in my church. But this is what the craziest amongst us are preaching. Where is common sense?

So the "right wing gun nuts" think Jesus is on their side apparently. They are making things up as they go along in their stupid and dangerous world. The NRA lobbyists have made sure to target those Christian conservatives to get them to buy guns. If anyone believes this crazy fake "Christian" chaplain, they will run right out to their local gun store to buy themselves a gun or two. It might mean they won't be able to afford school clothes for their kids. But hey, what's more important anyway? Clothes or guns? And who makes the profit on the sale of a gun? Just follow the money.

I am no religious scholar but to even posit that Jesus would have supported the second amendment is so ludicrous as to beg credulity. This fake chaplain claims to be Christian and know something about the Bible but he must be a front for the conservative Christian right wing and maybe even the corporate gun lobby. Does anyone actually believe this stuff?  Hard to know.They would be believing someone who lies and refuses to follow orders if they do. The facts and common sense mean nothing to these crazed gun rights extremists. I mean, Jesus must be about the only one left off of the NRA enemies list. Can you imagine any serious organization publishing a list of enemies? Is that what Jesus also believed? If Jesus wants everyone to have guns for self protection and to fight against the "enemy", here is just the list for him.

The NRA has done this for years. Back in the early 2000s they had a "blacklist". I even went to the Million Mom March sponsored Blacklist Ball in Washington D.C.. We were proud to be on the list. I hope the people who find themselves on this insidious enemies list are also proud. Being an enemy of the NRA means you are in favor of saving lives and doing all that can be done to prevent shootings. If that's bad, I would like to know why. The only problem is that this list must put a target on the backs of those who are on it and there are just enough crazy people with guns out there to potentially act out what "Dr. Chaps" is telling them. Get your guns and go after your enemies and your government. Jesus said you should do it. Just trust "Dr. Chaps".

As I have said many times, you just can't make this stuff up. We are better than this. It's definitely time to change a gun culture that promotes a fake "Christian" chaplain encouraging people to buy guns and to use them in acts of violence. Shame on him. Jesus was a non-violent and peaceful figure who preached those values to his followers. To twist biblical teachings to make them support your fear and paranoia is cynical at best and dangerous at most. Bad things have happened historically in the name of religion. This is just plain nuts!!!


  1. As an atheist, I hardly find any of this surprising - it was the hypocrisy of the Catholic Church throughout my youth that made me part ways with it altogether and embrace that which I could prove.

    That said, while I agree, awful things are done in the name of religion -- the last 12+ years of our wars and countless decades of the war crimes and atrocities of Israel and her enemies prove this....we cannot silence voices like this chaplain as it violates an amendment I fight for as hard as the second, our first amendment.

    the only way to counter speech we disagree with is more speech - convincing speech. If you're a Christian as you say you are, spread the positive tenets of the faith. Indeed, as atheist as I am, I have a lot of Christian friends who would be appalled at this guy's butchery of the bible and English language -- Ive had occasion to battle with the Westboro goons as a biker in funeral processions.

    As much as I hate what they say, I recognize their right to speak. Without our first amendment rights, we are nothing.

  2. I've looked at this subject in depth and my post on it is still popular.

    I agree that Jesus wouldn't have gotten in a political debate over what types of weapons people can/can't own or use, or a constitutional issue, or whether weapons are allowed for ownership at all, because his only concern is our immortal souls and how we live -- not what we own or are allowed to own. i.e. He'd be about as unlikely to join or support the NRA as the Brady Campaign. Or any other political group, for that matter.

    Jesus taught non-violence and to be peacemakers and to deescalate violence ... but He certainly didn't preach against self defense (presumably when those other things fail). Take a look if you'd like:


    1. I agree with some of your writings and take issue with others. I have never said that people should not own firearms if they choose to. In fact, my husband is a hunter and there are firearms in my house. They are locked up in a safe with no ammunition nearby. They are hunting guns. What "Dr. Chaps" is doing is to encourage people to buy guns to use against people they don't like or their own government. There is a difference there. He is a zealot and he is preaching violence against others. Many faith based organizations have positions on violence and firearms. The UCC, to which I belong, the Methodists, the Jewish faith, Catholics, some Lutheran synods, etc. My organizations work with many of those groups on non-violence and passing laws to keep people from being shot. I think Dr. Chaps is doing the opposite. That is why I wrote this post. And to those who wonder, as one commenter did, why I picked out this guy to highlight in my blog it's because he represents a dangerous subset of the American gun culture and he is not called out or discouraged by the corporate gun lobby. Indeed, the NRA puts up with the antics of their Board member, Ted Nugent, who is regularly encouraging violence. If people don't want to be associated with these nut cases, they need to do something about it. I haven't seen much of that.

  3. If God had intended people to have guns, he would have invented gun powder and steel about the same time fire was discovered. Instead, these things didn't appear until about the 13th Century CE in the West (about 9th Century CE in China).

    1. That is, if we think God invented anything. And perhaps God was a "she".

  4. The nuts get nuttier! I hope they get the biggest microphone in the world! The more folks hear their rants the more they isolate themselves.

    Japete, you can attest to this: I couldn't afford much of a gun from the proceeds selling my clothes would bring.

  5. Goofballs like this ex-Chaplain are most dangerous because they a) take our minds off the objective of reducing gun violence through sensible gun laws, mental health initiatives, anti-gun trafficking measures, etc, b) crank up the angst between folks on both sides of the issue c) provide no substantive thought or data and d) falsely paint gun owners/users as kooks even though they don't represent them.